After a cold winter, spring flowers peeking through the snow are a welcome sight! Did you know some early spring bloomers will begin to show themselves before the snow is gone? I’ve seen Snowdrops, Crocus, and even the tips of Tulips start pushing through the soil even though there is still snow around them.
These early spring flowers are typically bulbs that are planted in fall and once planted, will continue to bring colour and warmth to your garden every year weeks ahead of schedule. Not only do early spring blooming flowers add beauty, but they can also help attract bees and other pollinators to your yard early in the season. What a great way to encourage the pollinators to make your garden a regular place to visit.
Below are lists of plants started from bulbs that bloom in early spring. And this fall – typically in late September until October’s first frost - is the time to plant them! Names of the plants are provided with their Latin names in parenthesis. I’ve tried to list mainly North American native plants.
Early Spring Blooming Bulbs
When it comes to early flowering plants, most people think of bulbs. Early spring bulbs include Snowdrops (Galanthus nivalis), Dwarf Crested Iris (Iris cristata), Snow Crocus (Crocus chrysanthus), Wood Hyacinth (Hyacinthoides hispanica), Grape Hyacinth (Muscari), Winter Aconite (Eranthis hyemalis), Spring Snowflake (Leucojum vernum), and Striped Squill (Puschkinia scilloides).
Let the early spring flowers brighten your spirits after a long and dreary winter. Even if the snow of winter has not left, you can still enjoy the beginning of spring if you take the time now - this fall - to plant some bulbs that bloom in the early spring. Let them remind you that spring is already peeking her head out.
Now if you get bulbs and forget to plant them even as late as early November, they likely won't be viable come the following fall to plant. So, if you find some unplanted bulbs while readying your garden in the spring, go ahead and plant them in your garden – its their best chance of survival, and they may grow. Or put them in the fridge for a few days and pot them as indoor plants!Submitted by Doreen Coyne, a member of the Richmond Hill Garden & Horticultural Society